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So long

We're going offline here, because blogger is getting a bit annoying and there are better sites out there to host your blog on.  Seriously.
So come find me on LiveJournal, and I'm sorry for any inconvenience.




Caution:  This post contains spoilers for the Twilight series, including Breaking Dawn.  It also contains a bit of rantiness, so be warned.


Just finished Breaking Dawn this morning, and I need somewhere to rant about it.  I get the feeling that the friend who lent it to me wouldn't be too happy if I went and said all of this to her face, so I'll just type it up instead.  She's the type that's completely obsessed with the series, and I'm a bit more cynical.

From the beginning, I didn't expect much from BD.  The whole series, while okay, hasn't exactly been placed on my favorites list.  I dislike both Bella and Edward (Actually, Alice and Jake are the only two characters in those books I really like), so it's hard to get into the story.  I could go through the character/storytelling flaws of the whole series here too, but that would take awhile.  So we'll save it.  Back on topic, I hated the first chapter of BD.  The first sentence, really.  To me, it was almost beyond pathetic, but very Bella.  She's not a very strong character, so again, I didn't expect much different from her.  But still…the drama!  I don't really hold with that either.
The first "book" of BD, book Bella, as I call it, wasn't entirely interesting.  Sure, it had some fun moments (I probably liked all of the ones that everyone else hated), but as a whole my brain was yawning as I read it.  I seriously had to take a break at one point because it was getting too ridiculous for me.  Bella was totally obsessed with Edward, he was being a "gentleman" as always and, well…not much happened. 

Book 2, book Jacob, was much better.  I've always loved Jake best in the series, so it was great seeing stuff from his POV.  He's a lot more interesting.  I disliked the chapter names, but whatever, that's a small complaint.  I liked how he split off from Sam's pack to protect Bella.  That was really cool.  And I was glad Leah came with him, and Seth.  I admit, in this book, I was thinking that I might maybe actually like the ending of Breaking Dawn.  Sure, Bella was being a bit stupid, but that was to be expected.  Jake's coolness sort of made up for it and, well, I was actually interested.  Until I reached the end.  I was totally disappointed that Stepehenie Meyer made Jake imprint on Renesmee (What sort of name is that, anyway?).  I liked the Jake who was in love with Bella, not the Jake who liked Bella's kid.  It would have been much better that hadn't happened.

Book 3 came, and by this time I just wanted to be done.  Sure, there was excitement; there was fighting and sex.  Yay.  But I just didn't find it so interesting anymore.  Bella was too…predictably written.  Of course she wouldn't succumb to the newborn hunger, and of course she's better than every other vampire out there without even trying.  Nope, sorry, don't think it would work that way.  That part of Bella irritated me so much more than everything else put together, and when she said that the vampire world was the place where she belonged (after a long, boring, self-pitying monologue), I almost put the book down right then and there.  But I'd told my friend I would read it, so I just kept going.  Anyhow, Aro, Marcus, Caius, and a whole shitload of other vampires show up; they're outnumbered and out-talented by Bella and the special vampires around her (haha), and they're, of course, evil.  Right.  And then Renesmee, Bella's I'm-much-better-than-regular-vampires-because-I-have-the-best-of-both-worlds(like-Miley-Cyrus/Hannah-Montana) daughter manages to convince everyone that she should be allowed to live.  And the Volturi decide not to take anyone for their own benefit, hurrah.  The main conflict has been resolved peacefully.

Then, of course, there's the happily ever after, in which we have lots more sex (well, implied sex, at least), a happy Charlie, a happy Jake, a happy Renesmee, and even a happy random-other-vampires-who-hook-up.  Absolutely ridiculous, and altogether too predictable.  Don't we even get a bit of angst at the end, Stephenie?  And I still ship either Bella/Jake or Edward/Jake.  Or something other than Bella/Edward.

tl,dr; Edward is not Prince Charming, Bella shouldn't live a happy little fairy tale life with no problems, and Jake should be free to love who he wants to.

The end.


In honor of our country...

...I decided to post again.  It's been forever, hasn't it?  And I don't have much time now, so this isn't gonna be all that pretty or special.  Just thought I'd say hi.
After our vacation, I was intending to post about our trip and show you some pictures, but that didn't go so well.  My USB cable for my camera is currently misplaced, so I have a hundred pictures sitting on my camera waiting to be moved or something.  So...we'll just skip the vacation for now.  I had fun.  It was cool. 
Since it is the third of July today, I wanted to say happy birthday to America!  Eh-happy early birthday.  But I don't know if I'll be able to post tomorrow, so it's either early or late.
I don't know about you, but I can't wait for the fireworks!  I'm just a slight pyromaniac.  But tomorrow promises to be fun, if very hot.  If you live in the US, I hope you have a fun fourth!
If you're from Canada, happy belated Canada day; if you are from anywhere else...happy random day in July.
I think that about covers it so, until next time...


On Finals, Vacations, and Chocolate-Chip Cookies


Currently Reading:  Runemarks, Joanne Harris.  YA Fantasy.  7/10 for being a pretty good read but not altogether original.
Estoy:  Blasting Panic! At The Disco and wishing the weather was more summer-like (It's snowing).

Once again, I'd like to apologize for not keeping up with this.  No excuses.  Especially because hey, it's summer now!
I got out of school on last Thursday after going through the grueling Finals Week, and boy am I glad.  I passed all of my classes (phew!) and even managed to maintain a 4.0 GPA.  I want to be one of those students—the ones who have all A's for all four years of high school.  I think I can do it.  High school is, in my opinion, not all that much harder than middle school.  It might be tougher next year with AP classes, but that remains to be seen.
Before I have to worry about increased homework load, I have 3 whole-ish months of vacation.  My mom and I are leaving really soon to go pick my sister up from college and then go camping for a week, so this is the last time you'll be seeing me for awhile.  Don't worry, I'll post tons of pictures and tell you about the trip when I come back.
Well, that's all I wanted to say.  My summer hasn't been extremely exciting yet, and I don't want to talk anymore about school.  Besides, the cookies I just made need to be taken off the baking sheet.  Until next time…


I Stand Corrected...

…Because when I said that Prince Caspian, the movie was like Prince Caspian, the book, I lied.  Inadvertently, of course, but it was a lie nonetheless.
I re-read Prince Caspian the day after I saw the movie, and was quite amazed at all of the differences I found between the original writing by C.S. Lewis and what had happened onscreen.
As I believe I mentioned in my last post, the movie gave a bit more introduction to the characters than the book had, which I actually found nice.  On page 3 in the book, the Pevensie children are already back in Narnia.  I guess Mr. Lewis didn't feel like waiting to get the story started.  The beginning of the movie, in its deviations from the story, may almost be seen as symbolic for the rest of the screenplay versus what really happened in the books.
The four Pevensies, though they knew they were back in Narnia, had no idea of where they were.  Things had changed so much over the time they'd been gone—what was it, 1300 years?  I'm not sure1—that Cair Paravel was actually on an island.  The siblings were quite a bit disoriented, and they didn't run across the dwarf for a while after they had arrived.
Trumpkin2 is quite another story altogether.  In the movie, he had been caught by scouts after Caspian had run away from his castle.  In the book, he was caught as he was out looking for whatever help might arrive after Prince Caspian had used Susan's horn.
In fact, quite a bit had happened in Narnia before Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy arrived by Lewis' tale.  I can see that this might be a logistical nightmare for the screenwriters3, but I'm sure it could have been done.  In the book, Prince Caspian wasn't chased upon leaving the castle.  No one actually discovered that he was gone before his horse (which he did actually fall off of after a small fiasco involving galloping at high speeds through the woods and an inopportunely placed tree4) returned to the castle riderless.  And then there was no talk of kidnap spread by Miraz.  He simply told his armies to go attack Narnia.
Dr. Cornelius, Caspian's tutor and a half-dwarf, made himself scarce when Caspian's horse was discovered.  When he found out that Miraz was planning to start a war with the Old Narnians, he rode off as quickly as he could to find Prince Caspian and his people.  The King (as he became recognized by the Narnians) then decided to make for Aslan's How5 to set up a defense there.
Miraz and his men quickly discovered Caspian's location and arrived.  The armies were stronger than Caspian expected, and though the Narnians put up a brave fight, they were outnumbered by too much.  After a major battle had been lost, a council of war was called and it was decided that Caspian would wind the magic horn of Queen Susan.  It was then, after much of the fighting had been done, that the Pevensie children were actually called into Narnia.
As Peter, Susan, Edmund, Lucy, and Trumpkin travel toward King Caspian's camp at Aslan's How, the movie gets the general idea of what happened.  Lucy actually was almost killed by a bear and saved by Trumpkin.  I'm fairly certain that the movie cut out quite a bit of the traveling, actually, because how much do we want to see of people tramping through the woods6?  In the book, Lucy saw Aslan telling her to follow him, but the group ended up going the other way.  However, book-Aslan didn't want the children to go down the gorge as was suggested in the movie.  He wanted them to go the other way.  Trivial details such as this don't exactly make or break the story, but I am always happy to point them out.  In the end, Aslan eventually leads the group of travelers to Caspian's camp an all is happy7. 
When they reach Aslan's How, Trumpkin, Peter, and Edmund are told by Aslan to go meet with King Caspian.  Lucy and Susan stay with the Lion in the woods and awaken the tree people.
The group of men8 arrive in Aslan's How not a moment too soon.  At the time of their arrival, Nikabrik (a dwarf) and his "friends," a hag and a werewolf, are trying to convince King Caspian to call upon the White Witch for help.  As Nikabrik begins to call upon the Witch; Peter, Edmund, and Trumpkin all jump into the room and, along with Caspian, Trufflehunter (another dwarf), and Dr. Cornelius, kill all three conspirators.  A quick note—the hag and the werewolf were very well portrayed in the movie, and their lines came almost exactly out of the book.  They did a fantastic job on that!  But now back to what happened in the book.
Kings Peter and Edmund become acquainted with King Caspian, and unlike in the movie, there is no animosity between them.  They all work together.  What happened then in the movie is pretty constant with the book's plot—Peter calls for a fight with Miraz; Miraz is goaded into accepting by his own men; Miraz ends up dead after the fight by the hands of one of the men who motivated him to accept the challenge.  Then comes the great battle.  There is no fantastic collapsing ground in the book, though that scene was very exciting in the movie.  Without that, the battle seems to be going a bit poorly for the Narnians until the trees come to attack.  This causes the whole Telmarine Army to flee back to Beruna's Bridge.  The bridge had been removed from Beruna by this point in the book, but again, I see how this could have been a bit of a problem in movie-land.  In the book, though, the Telmarine armies simply surrender instead of whatever else it was that happened in the movie.
At this point in the story, we cut to a random scene of Aslan running through the towns that they Telmarines have built in Narnia and freeing the true Narnians from the Telmarines.  Susan and Lucy are still with him, having been kept away from the battle because they're girls.  I must say, I like the movie version of this part better, in that the girls get to fight and there are no random deviations from the main plot.
When the main battle is won by the Narnians and all the Narnians have been freed from Telmarine rule, Aslan then comes back, recognizes Caspian X as King of Narnia, and then everyone has a happy little feast.  Oh, and Reepicheep, the cute little mouse, gets his tail back.  As in the movie, the Telmarines are offered a chance to go back to their world; some are skeptical of the deal once the first men disappear; and Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy prove that everything is safe by going through the barrier themselves.  Then we have ourselves a happy little ending.
The scene in the movie involving an attack on the Telmarine castle never happened in the book.  There wasn't much of a problem with it except for that, though9.  Well, that and the fact that I don't think griffins were ever mentioned by C.S. Lewis in any of his Narnia books.  I could be wrong, but I don't think I am.
So ends my corrections of my last post.  Sorry about the misunderstanding.

1 Actually, they never specified in the books, but I'm sure the movie people wanted something a bit more concrete than "a long time."  Things like that, I don't mind quite so much since it didn't drastically affect the story.
2 Yep, that's the dwarf's name.  You learn something new every day, eh?
3 And I'm not yet sure if this is a good excuse for what they did
4 If you get my drift…
5 The place where the stone table was buried.
6 Actually, if by people you mean "Peter," then I'm not minding so much, but that's just me.  And probably most other obsessive girls in America, but that's missing the point.
7 Or as happy as things can be in the middle of a war that's going badly, I suppose.
8 How very sexist of C.S. Lewis—though I suppose that's just how things were back then.
9 But you know, I did always feel that that scene was a bit off.  Now I know why.  I wonder why they put it in?  We may never know.


Prince Caspian

When talking about a movie such as Prince Caspian, it is hard to know where to begin.  The epic battle scenes?  The superb filming?  The characters?
Maybe it would benefit us all if I just decided to start at the beginning.  With a warning:  This will have major spoilers.  If you don't want to know what happens, I'd advise you don't read this.  Are we good to go?  Then lets dive right in.
I'm sure I won't want to waste your time with the plot, since I have quite a few things to say as it is.  And really, you should already know the plot.  If you're reading this currently, I'd expect that you've seen the movie already.  If you haven't yet seen it, I would advise that you go to the nearest theater now and get a ticket.  If you really insist on reading this anyway (you dedicated fan!), here is an excellent synopsis courtesy of IMDb.
Though the opening scene of the movie wasn't exactly ever written into the books, there was nothing that I found objectionable about it.  It gave a nice bit of introduction that the book did not exactly provide before diving in to the story.  Harmless things like that I don't mind being added to movies that are based on books.  It's the more annoying unnecessary things that can ruin a movie that has strayed from it's book.  But more on that later.
Narnia—the entrance into Narnia—was absolutely breathtaking.  Apparently the film was done in New Zealand.  Well, I want to go to New Zealand for my next vacation.  The scenery was so beautiful.  It almost made you believe the movie was filmed in, well, Narnia!  I could gush about the lush scenery and the fantastic sets for a whole post, but that's unadvisable.  This is going to be long enough as it is.
I can't really say how well the movie followed the books, since it's been awhile since I last read Prince Caspian, but I think they stuck to the plot fairly well.  As I said before, there were some deviations.  Some I minded.  Some I didn't.  Overall, I'd give them some Caryn points for sticking to what I remember of the story, though.  Let me know if I'm mistaken.
The characters were, of course, all fantastic.  The actors had obviously matured from the last Narnia, but they still seemed to fit the films.  After all, it was a year later in their world, too.  Lucy, played by Georgie Henley, was cute as ever.  Anna Popplewell made a very pretty Susan.  And even Skandar Keyes has matured into a fairly cute little Edmund, after all.  Sorry though, dude, you're still not the highlight of the film.  That title might belong to someone else.  Prince Caspian, played by Ben Barnes, made a nice, tasty Telmarine.  I mean, check it out!  What, you ask, could possibly be hotter than Ben Barnes dressed up in battle gear?  I'm willing to admit, there's not much.  But, there is darling William Moseley (aka Peter).  Ah, he's just adorable when you stick him by that stone table and put a confused sort of smile on his face!  Sadly IMBd doesn't even seem to have stills from my favorite part of the movie!  *Finds William Moseley Fansite*  Ah, much better!  Readers, prepare for a barrage of William Moseley pictures.  Let's see…here's him talking to our favorite Telamarine Prince,  him in the railroad station, here's one I'll call "frightened," (Goodness, he does look a bit like Ed Speelers there, does he not?  More on that man later...)  "expressing his brotherly love for Edmund," another one of him and our favorite Telmarine Prince (ooh-la-la!), the promo poster for some place other than the U.S., just him alone in that sexy promo pose, on set but not on camera, with a face that seems to read "C'mon" (I'd be answering, "Hell yeah!"  But that's just me), one I'll call "manly" (I was going to call it "sexy," but that could apply to any of them), "pensive" (Not to be confused with Pevensie…), yet another of him thinking (he seems to think more than most guys…), "firelight," after arguing with our dear Prince and searching for truth, "'I'm not lost!'", him wearing some too-awesome battle gear, here's after just having entered Narnia, another from the same time period because he's just too hot, "looking for Aslan," (oo-er!) and even one of him hugging Lu.  *is jealous.*  Then, for some reason, being hugged by Susan *is even more jealous*   And, last but by all means not least, off set but sexy as ever.
Sorry for the little gallery of William Moseley photos.  There's what, 20 some?  Wow, I may have gotten a bit carried away.  And sadly, I still haven't gotten my William Fix.  But now I've wasted too much time being a little fangirl instead of discussing the movie.  And now I've almost forgotten what I was going to say.  But only almost.
As with most movies, there are parts of Prince Caspian that were slightly reminiscent of some other movies, but not in too major a way.  The gigantic battle where the Telmarines came to Narnia was, of course, a bit like a scene from The Lord of the Rings.  However, since The Lord of the Rings had pretty much the best epic battle scenes ever seen in a movie, anything that comes now will probably remind people of it.  After all, battles can only be done so many ways!  In The Lord of the Rings, however, the troops were mostly gathered on dry, barren, forsaken land.  The land in Prince Caspian was still beautiful, forming a nice juxtaposition with the troops.  So I didn't have much objection there.  When Peter, Prince Caspian, Edmund, Susan, and Lucy had just found the stone table, the lighting system reminded me a bit of National Treasure 2.  I'm not sure how common things like that were ,though.  When Aslan called the waters of the river to wipe out the Telmarines also made me think of The Lord of the Rings, but the way the water formed into a man quickly changed that opinion.  Lastly, the White Witch—when she appeared, entombed in ice—made me think, not of another movie, but of something I've read.  She was exactly how I imagined Circe to look in The Sweet Far Thing when she is trapped in the well.  Quite amazing, is it not?
Though in the book, I didn't think Prince Caspian or Peter really wanted to work with the Witch.  Probably just a snippet added for cinematic reasons, don't you think?
Something else that was added for cinematic reasons would definitely be the little romantic sub-plot between Susan and Prince Caspian.  Yes, she's pretty.  Yes, he's hot.  Does that mean they have to fall in love with one another?  No.  That really bugged the crap out of me, but then again, I think every Disney movie has to have a little love.  Otherwise it couldn't be Disney.
On the other hand, the costumes for the movie also amazed me.  I mean, they were awesome!  Not so much the pretty dresses, but the armor was to die for!  I would so love to wear this stuff.  Yeah, it's no doubt very heavy, but gosh!  If I ever do become an actor, I'd want costumes this cool.  Yes, I am aware that the three nearest people are men.  Does that mean I can't want their clothes?  They're not the only ones, either….I would kill for Eragon's pants.  Or hell, the whole outfit!  And the armor.  But I digress.
I thought that, overall, the movie was done fairly well.  There were no major plot holes as seen in Eragon, it wasn't overly cheesy, and there was even a bit of deeper meaning to it.  I've written enough for today, though, so how about I explore that another time.  I would give Prince Caspian a 9/10, which means you should definitely go see it!
This has been Caryn…


At The End

Currently Reading:  Teen, Inc. by Stefan Petrucha.  8/10 for being a funny and pretty deep story disguised (or written) in the form of YA fic.
                  Obsession, Deceit, and Really Dark Chocolate by Kyra Davis.  8/10 for being funny and a satisfying read, but only as deep as the shallow end of a pool.  Warning:  this is an adult book.  Enough said.
Estoy:  Okay1.
     Today—or yesterday, technically, but today works just as well—was the official end of my track season.  It's sort of weird for track to be over now when it's been going for what, 7 weeks?  Yep, for 7 weeks I have not come straight home after school.  Instead, I've had practice for 1, 2, even 3 hours!  The only days I didn't have practice were meet days, and there weren't many of those.  Seriously, even on our early release days we had to go back to school for practice.  It's been quite a season.
    I was in long, high, and triple jump this year.  While I didn't do my best at yesterday's meet, which I was kind of disappointed about, I haven't had a half bad season.  My highest jump was 4'2"2, my longest jump was 12'5", and my best triple jump was 24'6".  I know these numbers may not seem all that great, but keep in mind that I'm just a freshman.  I'm hoping to do better next year, of course.  I've decided, though, to stay in shape this year and I started my new tradition of after-school runs (I'm planning to go in the morning on weekends and once school gets out).  I didn't run all that far, really, but I ran enough to make me breathe harder and also to make my shins hurt like hell.  I don't actually think I could have gone much farther because my shins were that bad.
    I was actually lucky that I was able to go running today, considering the weather this morning.  I woke up and, no joke, it was snowing.  Our weather has been doing that a lot lately—it'll be nice for a few days and then it'll snow for a few.  It's really annoying.  It is not meant to snow in May!  I mean, I don't expect the weather here to be like it would in Hawaii, but I'd be fine if it was just a bit warmer and the snow was only rain.  Thanks to the snow, we had maybe 5 track meets canceled.  It sure made our season seem a bit shorter, and I wish we'd gotten to have more meets.  But so it goes.  Anyhow, I'd best be off now to enjoy my free time.  Until next time…
1  That's all there is to it.
2  Which I actually did better than last year, but I hurt my back right at the
beginning of the season, and it's still getting better because I didn't want to take time off. =]

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